Folke Kyling

Three Major Types of Bow Ties

Bow ties certainly come in different colors, patterns, and sizes, but they also come in different shapes. Three of these shapes are: Batwing, Butterfly, and Diamond Point.

Let’s go black and white and European to show examples of these different types of ties.


Fips Fleischer

Fips Fleischer (Source: Deutsche Fotothek‎ via Wikimedia Commons)

Fips Fleischer was a German Jazz musician and composer with the bulk of his music career between the late 1930s and 1990s. He traveled the world to perform and had buddies like legendary Louis Armstrong.

In this picture from 1954 he’s sporting a Batwing tie. This style was more common during that time, and most of the time I see it is in period TV shows and movies like Mad Men that took place during the mid Twentieth Century.

This style is characterized by the blades — typically ranging between 1.5″ to 2″ in width. Whether it is named after bats or not is unclear.


Maurice Duruflé

Maurice Duruflé (Source: Wikimedia Commons)

Maurice Duruflé was a French composer. He focused on the Organ, and his most famous work is Requiem op. 9. Along with his wife, Marie-Madeleine Chevalier, he toured during the 1960s and 1970s.

In this photo dated 1962, Duruflé is wearing a Butterfly tie. Currently, this seems like the most common and popular type of bow tie. It is pretty easy to find pictures of and spot at social events. So, Butterflies will likely serve as a man’s first bow tie and will likely remain a staple of his collection.

The blades of this type widen in width, then narrow, and finally flare out with a maximum width of about 2.5″.

Diamond Point

Folke Kyling

Folke Kyling (Source: Wikimedia Commons)

Folke Kyling was a Swedish politician who, among other offices, served as the Vice Mayor of Stockholm from 1954 to 1966.

In this image from the 1950s, Kyling is wearing a Diamond Point tie. It doesn’t seem nearly as common as the Butterfly, but it seems more popular than the Batwing.

Like the Butterfly, the width of its blades flare in and out, but instead of a straight end, the end is pointed. When it is worn, one side of the tie has the pointed end on top with the other pointed end behind the bow on the other side. It provides a fun way to change things up.

Hat Tip: GiltMANual